Dental practices helping Covid-19 response
A dental business that is one of only a handful of practices in Cambridgeshire appointed to provide emergency care has secured a Lloyds Bank loan to help it trade through Covid-19 disruption.
Cambridge-based Antwerp Dental Group has been classified as an Urgent Dental Centre by England’s chief dental officer, meaning it receives referrals from NHS 111 and other practices. Highly trained employees with the appropriate personal protective equipment are able to safely administer emergency care.
While all the Group’s eight practices remain operational, offering advice and medication, the main site in Cambridge is providing hands-on treatment services and care during lockdown.
Antwerp Dental Group is currently unable to take routine private practice appointments – which account for over half of its income – prompting Lloyds Bank to offer support.
The dental group has agreed a £550,000 emergency loan with the bank from the government’s Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) to help it trade through the COVID-19 disruption.
The company, which has turnover of £6.5m, is led by clinical director Raj Wadhwani.
Greg Kane, Antwerp Dental Group’s director of operations, said: “It’s an unusual time for us and our people. While we’ve had to cancel our regular private practice appointments, we’re playing a crucial role in offering emergency care to patients from across Cambridgeshire. Our dentists and nurses are wearing specialist gowns and respirator masks to ensure they’re as safe as possible.
“The team at Lloyds Bank were so quick to offer emergency funding so we can provide care to help the NHS at such a crucial time. The money will also cover us while we’re unable to fulfil routine appointments.”
Mike Philpot, relationship director for the healthcare sector at Lloyds Bank, added: “The team at Antwerp Dental Group have built a fantastic business based on outstanding care and it’s now stepping in to support the NHS. By providing emergency dental care it makes it less likely patients will go to hospital, reducing the pressure on the health service.
“Having supported Raj and his team for the past five years it was a logical step for us to offer some emergency funding at a crucial time until they’re able to fulfil routine appointments again.”